I’ve been a fatty most of my life. You name the diets, I’ve tried them: fasting (except for fluids) for a week every month, Israeli Army diet, Scarsdale diet, Atkins, Body Trim, Weight Watchers, LowCarbHighFat (a version of the Paleo thing) , Medifast (prescribed and supervised by a doctor)… and with each of them I had some minor success that soon dissipated. And then, afterwards, I’d get a little bit fatter. And, yes, I stuck to them and was serious about the process. I did the Medifast program for a year. It consisted of breakfast and dinner being a protein shake (with vitamins and minerals added) and an apple and yoghurt, or cup of soup for lunch. I went to the gym two or three times a week and walked lots. At the end of the year I’d lost about a stone/14 pounds/6.4 kilos.

Once my back began to disintegrate the medication I was on for that only added to the difficulty. Of course, once cancer turned up it became even harder. That’s right; every other cancer patient I met had lost a lot of weight while on chemo. I got fatter. I used to do the World Vision 40 hour famine every year. One year I weighed myself before I began the fast and then again at the end of it. I’d put on 2 pounds/1 kilo!

I’m not telling you this to get your sympathy (nor your disgust). I want you to understand what I’ve done recently. I’ve tried the Garcinia Cambogia supplements. Instead of an endorsement for the product, I want to share my experience as a warning to other desperate fatties.

What finally gave me the urge to try the stuff was the combination of a month’s free trial, with the endorsement by Julie Goodwin, the first winner of the Australian MasterChef show. She has recently lost weight and is looking good. I thought, she’s a celebrity I actually trust and, as it’s a free trial, what have I got to lose apart from my fat?

It slightly bothered me that a whole lot of small print that mentioned a high price for future orders, flashed at the bottom of my computer screen after I’d hit the ‘send order’ button but I thought at the time: well, it’s probably my poor computer skills and, anyway, surely if it’s a ‘trial’ I can say, no, at the end.

Then, to my horror, a couple of days after I sent the order I saw Julie Goodwin on TV. She was expressing her outrage at the company using her name and claiming she achieved her weight loss due to the supplements, when she hadn’t used it at all! I felt a bit sick when I heard that but I still thought, it’s just a free trial. I might as well give it a go.

After sticking to it for over three weeks, while also cutting down portion sizes, I had lost 400 grams (that’s less than a pound). I figured that this loss could just as easily be attributed to the smaller portions I was eating. Also, I felt nauseous every time I swallowed the pill. I decided it was not fulfilling its promise of a substantial weight loss, I’d been sucked in yet again, and I should cancel the order before I found myself having to pay squillions for something that was useless.

I found the website and clicked on “contact us”. There was no email address, which I thought was strange. There was a list of phone numbers, including one for my state. I rang it and rang it and rang it and eventually I got a recorded message which said that this number is not connected. I decided to try the phone number for Sydney. I got the same message.

I then went back to the site but there was no other way to contact them. I read the teeny tiny small print and found a name for either a parent or a subsidiary company and went to their site. I clicked on “contact” and found the same list of phone numbers. However, I also found an email address: myaccount@support…something or other. Yay!  I wrote a polite message asking for my order to be cancelled, with the suggestion that a company that spruiks its “wonderful customer support, with trained support workers”, should be easier to contact than it is.

My email bounced.

I then went searching even further (I wish I could remember what I did!) and finally found one of their sites that had a “live chat” room. I logged on there and a nice person called “Zaie” asked me how they could help. I told them I had great difficulty contacting the company and that the phone numbers weren’t connected. (She/he didn’t apologise.) I said I’d like to cancel my order. I was offered a brand new plan, with great savings to myself. I said, what’s the point when the product doesn’t work for me. He/she told me how much I could save with the new offer.

By then, I was feeling a bit stroppy with the person! So I said, actually I’ve been thinking, now that I have terminal cancer, what’s the point of trying to lose weight? Is it so I can die, thinner?
She/he agreed to cancel my order. Zaie took my order number and my details and assured me my order was cancelled immediately and that I would receive a confirmation email within 24 hours.

It is now five days since she/he said that and I still haven’t received the email. And, do you think I can remember how I found that site? NOPE. Silly, trusting me, thought the problem was dealt with but now I’m not sure.

If more of the stuff turns up it’s going straight back to sender and I will be keeping a close eye on my credit card.

I hate to admit it, but I’ve been scammed. Don’t get sucked in by their so-called endorsements. I gather this company regularly lies about celebrities using their product. They’re lying mongrels. And, it turns out I’m not the only one person for whom it didn’t work.

Please feel free to share this blog with as many people as you like.
And, please don’t send me any diet plans. I’ve decided to love myself as I am.